Over the last month or so I’ve been noticing something about the culture I used to be part of, the flair for dramatizing everything, no matter how minor, improbable, or even out and out lies. Usually this fact-free embellishment is to prove some point about how God blessed someone richly after they prayed about something that the average person would make a decision on themselves.
Example: When I was back in the States last month one of my friends from my old QF church had a car accident in a parking lot. A fender-bender really. No one was hurt beyond shook up and the door of the car was mangled. The car was so old that the destruction of the door meant that the other person’s insurance said that they were totaling the car instead of paying to replace the door. The door repair would have cost a good five hundred dollars more than the Blue Book value of the car.
My friends took the check and started looking for another used car. They had a small budget for the car, but looked at a car a good thousand dollars out of their price range. While talking to the owners of the car they wanted they discovered that the owners of that new car were also the same sort of hyper evangelical Christians that they were, so they remarked that they believed that after much prayer that God wanted them to buy that car. They just could not scrape up the asking price. My friends made a much lower offer, and the sellers said that they would take it to the Lord in prayer, but they needed the asking price for the financial health of their family.
Everyone prayed on it again and the sellers told my friends that they would take the offer because God had told them to sell it at that price. The transaction took place and you would think that was the end of it, right? Nope, those of us who are friends of the buyers got treated to an over-the-top retelling of God reaching down and making this happen for His own glory instead of the usual dickering back and forth that always takes place when you buy a used car from someone else.
I have hundreds of these stories I witnessed in my old church, both good and bad but always built up to magnificent tales of God’s glory. Stories about all night prayer vigils we’d undertaken over the pastor’s mother’s car wreck after we were told she was badly injured and in the hospital when it turned out that the ER found nothing more than a few bruises on her body. Tales told as if God Himself came down out of the heavenlies to find someone a close parking space, or saved someone money. Definitely not multiplying loaves and fishes, or speaking out of a donkey.
I’ve also witnessed the opposite – a tale that is disingenuously embroidered to keep people from doing whatever it is that particular cultural enforcer deems so bad. Many times ignoring all scientific evidence to the contrary before making dire predictions. Sometimes this is used to explain things that happen where there are no logical reasoning involved. Like The Transformed Wife author Lori Alexander claiming her 80 year old mother got cancer from weekly manicures. She took a scientific study on one of the chemicals in nail polish and added claims that the evidence does not support as true in her post Dangers of Nail Polish and Nail Polish Remover.
Here’s Lori’s totally without proof claim:
Do you see what she did there? Jumped right from an outcome to the only thing she could think of without doing research first. Oh so very dramatic, ignoring that cancer does happen and it can happen in the elderly without any provable cause. I’m sorry her mother had to join the chemo and radiation club, because it is a hell I would not wish on anyone, but it’s childish to assume it was her nails and to use one’s own mother as a bad example to prove a point.
Lori goes on to dramatically quote all these ‘experts’ on nail polish and cancer, all the while willfully misunderstanding the data in most of the studies that do not even mention the dangers of nail polish remover. She starts her quotes with a doctor some believe is a quack. Never open your proof with someone who has had legitimate others debunk.
Here’s the truth of that risk from a study on hormone disruption and the risks of cancer: from The Huffington Post – Yes, Chemicals in Nail Polish Can Leach into Your Body
Remember, this is the exact same article that Lori partially uses to support her claims that nail polish gave her mama cancer. Not likely unless mama was working at a salon slaving over the claws of those entitled enough to be able to afford someone else doing not always the most fun grooming task.
Lori’s post has it all, dramatic claims, family drama, lack of logical thinking and scare tactics levied by a frustrated, angry, disconnected female cultural enforcer.
Dear readers, why do you think people in the church love to hype everything to a fake dramatic level instead of being truthful?
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